The Beasts of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 96

and piled far in the stern of the boat,
until at last, to her immense relief, she saw the bow rise gently from
the mud of the bank and the stern drift slowly with the current until
it again lodged a few feet farther down-stream.

Jane found that by running back and forth between the bow and stern she
could alternately raise and lower each end of the boat as she shifted
her weight from one end to the other, with the result that each time
she leaped to the stern the canoe moved a few inches farther into the
river.

As the success of her plan approached more closely to fruition she
became so wrapped in her efforts that she failed to note the figure of
a man standing beneath a huge tree at the edge of the jungle from which
he had just emerged.

He watched her and her labours with a cruel and malicious grin upon his
swarthy countenance.

The boat at last became so nearly free of the retarding mud and of the
bank that Jane felt positive that she could pole it off into deeper
water with one of the paddles which lay in the bottom of the rude
craft. With this end in view she seized upon one of these implements
and had just plunged it into the river bottom close to the shore when
her eyes happened to rise to the edge of the jungle.

As her gaze fell upon the figure of the man a little cry of terror rose
to her lips. It was Rokoff.

He was running toward her now and shouting to her to wait or he would
shoot--though as he was entirely unarmed it was difficult to discover just
how he intended making good his threat.

Jane Clayton knew nothing of the various misfortunes that had befallen
the Russian since she had escaped from his tent, so she believed that
his followers must be close at hand.

However, she had no intention of falling again into the man's clutches.
She would rather die at once than that that should happen to her.
Another minute and the boat would be free.

Once in the current of the river she would be beyond Rokoff's power to
stop her, for there was no other boat upon the shore, and no man, and
certainly not the cowardly Rokoff, would dare to attempt to swim the
crocodile-infested water in an effort to overtake her.

Rokoff, on his part, was bent more upon escape than aught else. He
would gladly have forgone any designs he might have

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